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habsburgs

The Wiener Schnitzel, by way of Constantinople, Paris, and Milan

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Where does the Wiener Schnitzel come from? The name of course ties it to Vienna, but many contend that it actually comes from Milan. Breaded, deep-fried veal might not seem like a highly original concept, but the origins of the schnitzel can send passions soaring, and historians scrambling. So where does the thing actually come…

The story of the Hermesvilla

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It is quite impressive how some buildings in Vienna have survived the last centuries facing, among many others, the demands of modern societies and the consequences of two World Wars. One such place is the Hermesvilla. Built in 1882-1886, at the request of the emperor Franz Joseph for his wife Elisabeth, the Hermesvilla is located…

Bridge over the River Danube

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Bridges have long been important features of Vienna as they have functioned as connections between the various parts of the city located alongside the Danube. Today, of course, the river is regulated and the bridges are standard features transporting thousands of commuters to and from the city every day. But this hasnt always been the…

The story of the Dorotheum

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If you are lucky, next time you pass by the Dorotheum auction house, you may see the delivery of beautiful classic cars, precious paintings, or other interesting items. The auction house Dorotheum has a long history. At over 300 years old, some refer to it as “Tante Dorothee” or “Aunt Dorothy”, it is one of…

Sisi the royal horse whisperer

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Empress Elisabeth of Austria, originally of Bavaria and commonly known as Sisi, is often depicted astride a horse in portraits, and for good reason. She was an excellent horsewoman and rider who had a particular fondness for horses, which she likely inherited from her father, a great horseman in his own right. In fact, it…

The Mystery of a Viennese Hospital Named After a Belgian Princess

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Vienna has long been regarded as a center for medicine, with a history of medical studies that stretches back over 600 years. In some ways, Vienna and its medical faculty can be considered the cradle of modern medicine, but the city only really came into its own and was recognized as being at the forefront…

A racetrack fit for a king

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Did you know that Vienna historically had two separate horse race tracks, one for trotting (Trabrennbahn) and one for galloping (Galopprennbahn). The Galopprennbahn is the older of the two, having been opened already in 1839. It was according to the architectural and artist tenants of Historicism, which was popular at the time, incorporating a great…

The Queen in Vienna

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By now  is it probable that you already heard the news: Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor was born on May 6.  And this happy occasion has coincided with a royal event that took place in Vienna some time ago, namely the visit of the Queen.  It was the year 1969 and from May 5-7, Elisabeth II, Prince…

The Story of the Starhembergs

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Perhaps you are familiar with the name “Starhemberg“. This is an ancient noble family whose origins can be traced back to Upper Austria and apparently before they served the Habsburgs, they also served the Babenberger, which would mean that they have been around since the 12thcentury. One Starhemberg, Erasmus I, won favor with the Habsburgs…